In addition to officially suspending the Champions League and the Europa League indefinitely, UEFA also announced yesterday that Financial Fair Play regulations will not only be relaxed, but they will not be assessed at all for the 2020-21 cycle.
The Executive Committee reiterated its full commitment to club licensing and Financial Fair Play and agreed that the current exceptional circumstances necessitate some specific interventions to facilitate the work of member associations and clubs.
It supports the proposal to give member associations more time to complete the club licensing process, until the admission process for next season’s UEFA club competitions has been redefined.
As a result of the increasing uncertainty generated by the ongoing extraordinary events, the Executive Committee also decided to suspend the club licensing provisions that relate to the preparation and assessment of clubs’ future financial information. This decision applies exclusively for participation in the 2020/21 UEFA club competitions.
What this may mean in practical terms remains to be seen. Presumably UEFA will update the actual regulations shortly so that all teams know whether 2020-21 will be completely taken out of the multi-year cycle that’s used to assess a club’s finances, or if it will be prorated somehow, or will be part of some other arrangement.
UEFA are obviously right to expect that the coronavirus pandemic will hit clubs very hard economically, and this move was quite probably a necessary one.
But could it open the door for a season of unchecked spending by willing owners after the world and football get past the worst of this outbreak? Things could get interesting...
Oh, and presumably Manchester City are still banned from Europe.